So you just published your first book, huh? Congrats! In a way, you have achieved the very thing that many writers set out to do. In another way, you have introduced yet another book onto the market that is likely to get lost in the mass of others. But how can you change that? Marketing and book reviews. In this post, we will provide a guide for bloggers and writers, just like you, who are looking to get more book reviews.
Issues with Getting Book Reviews
There are lots of issues with new authors getting book reviews. Some of the more common challenges these new authors face include:
• Not having enough money (or money backing them) to buy book reviews (yes, people do that).
• Not having enough media or industry contacts.
• Having no idea how to solicit reviews (other than paying for them).
• Wanting to make sales and get reviews to make sales (a catch-22, if you will).
• Getting started soliciting book reviews when it’s too late (your book has been out too long).
• Just not knowing where to start at all. Getting reviews from Amazon or a prestigious magazine? How do you do it?
The Early Bird Catches the Worm
Here is something we cannot stress enough: the early bird catches the worm. Yes, we know you have all heard that phrase before. However, it is very true when you are looking for more book reviews. Get started before your book even starts rolling off the presses, if possible. Get together a press kit to send out. Often, this includes a PDF of your book, a bio of yourself and headshot, a press release for your book, as well as a cover letter introducing yourself and your work. Buy lots of mailing supplies to start sending them out.
Who to Contact
So who do you send these handy kits to? Here are a few ideas (many of which only cost postage):
• Top customer reviewers on Amazon.com.
• Book Blogs, where bloggers may review your book. Or any number of online bloggers.
• Indie Reader, which solicits manuscripts for review.
• The Independent Book Publishers Association programs for review.
• Social media contacts.
• Contact small, regional newspapers. You might want to pick a couple of newspapers near you (or in an area connected to the book) to send your kit to.
• Trade your own review of another book for a reviews of your book.
Good luck with your reviews, and never forget about the law of reciprocity. Offer to read and review other peoples books, and they may offer the same in return.
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